Flag from Wikimedia. Trump by Sambeet on Pixabay. Illustration courtesy of the author

Trump’s Statement Following His Acquittal Is Pure Fascism

Pushing forward his Big Lie and “great other” narratives, Trump is sending a clear message to his supporters: the fight continues.

We knew it would happen, yet we all nurtured a fool’s hope that, somehow, 17 Republican senators would find their spines and vote to convict Donald Trump of the crime he committed. Our better nature is to wish for the best, but we must always prepare for the worst, mainly when the GOP is in charge of the outcome. And the very worst just happened: Donald Trump has been acquitted. Again.

His family and sycophants are already parading, claiming that “#MAGA is ascending again” and celebrating the news as if it were a Superbowl victory. Ignoring a 57–43 vote to convict, the most bipartisan conviction in American history, they are framing the event as an absolute vindication. They “owned the libs” once more.

We know how they are going to twist this further, don’t we?

An acquittal means Trump is innocent, which his supporters will interpret as proof of his truthfulness and honesty. The Trump propaganda network will frame the impeachment, the trial, and the verdict as yet another attempt to silence Trump. They will use it to reinvigorate the Big Lie that the election was stolen from him. Trump’s acquittal will support and reinvigorate his Big Lie, providing even more legitimacy to his new political endeavours.

A few weeks ago, I argued that Trump was setting up a shadow administration in Mar-a-Lago. Far from retiring from public life, he would continue to incite violence and chaos as an anti-president, posing as the rightful ruler forced “in exile” by a usurper. I also held, to much criticism, that this move was the first step towards civil war.

Well, it turns out Trump just took the second step in this very direction with the statement he released following his acquittal. Far from traditional communication, this short address is riddled with authoritarian references, peppered with Nazi-style quotes, and, being Trump, filled with lies.

Donald Trump’s statement.

Trump does not introduce himself as “former president” but as the 45th President, a deliberate choice that plays to the rest of the statement. He frames his acquittal as “upholding justice and defending [the] truth” against enemies who would attack the Consitution and the “principles at the heart of our country” for political gains. If there’s one thing Trump supporters love more than their 2A rights and their racism, it’s the Consitution.

Where the document gets frightening is when Trump talks about “Our cherished Constitutional Republic.” Notice that he doesn’t use the word democracy. Arguing that the USA is a republic and not a democracy has been a Republican talking point for decades. It is used as an easy explanation to justify how a party like the GOP can stay in power while continually failing to win the popular vote.

Like most of the GOP’s terminology, we can safely assume that this argument served as yet another dog whistle for white supremacy. Since 2016, however, the GOP has fully embraced its anti-democratic views. The party has become an authoritarian cult. Therefore, Trump’s choice not to call America a democracy isn’t a detail; it’s a deliberate choice of words meant to reassert the idea that a dictator would better serve the US.

Conflating all social and political movements once again, Trump accuses his opponents of disrespecting the rule of law, cheering on mobs, and inciting violence. Beyond the blatant projection, this rhetoric is extremely dangerous. Assimilating political views, social movements, and inherent personal traits by grouping BLM, the Democrats, the radical left, and Antifa (while not explicitly mentioned, we understand the reference) is the first step towards violence and hatred of a “great other.”

Trump poses as a “champion for the rule of law, the heroes of law enforcement, and the [right to debate issues].” Law and order, Blue lives matter, first amendment right, the Holy Trinity of the white supremacist. He thanks the domestic terrorists who stormed the Capitol once again, calling them “decent, hardworking, law-abiding, God-and-Country-loving citizens.”

These adjectives remind us of the fascist slogans of the 30s and 40s:

  • Mussolini’s Credere, obbedire, combattere (Believe, Obey, Fight);
  • Pétain’s Travail, Famille, Patrie (Work, Family, Country)
  • Hitler’s Ein Volk, ein Reich, ein Führer (One People, One Empire, One Leader)

The last paragraph of the statement doesn’t even try to hide its plagiarism: “one People, one family, one glorious nation under God.” Remember that the only book we know for sure Trump has read is a compilation of Hitler’s speeches.

Trump’s choice of adjectives and qualifiers for America evokes the idea of a perfect society rooted in obedience, religion, and hard work: in short, proper WASP capitalism.

Finally, Trump stops with the innuendo and states it outright: “MAGA has just begun.” The sentence that ends the paragraph — “There has never been anything like it” — removes any doubts about the author of the document: that’s pure Trump gibberish. He hammers his point, stating that “Together, there is nothing we cannot accomplish.”

Trumpism was on the verge of being destroyed but is now “born-again” more potent than ever, and Trump knows it. The GOP has legitimised his lies and, more dangerously, has all but accepted and condoned his violence. You’d be a fool to believe that the threat will wither away.

I write about politics, business, society and culture on Medium. For startup/business content, check my newsletter: fundraisedd.substack.com

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store